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       Warner, Smith's fireworks guide Aussies to early control of Boxing Day Test
         Posted on :18:24:17 Dec 26, 2017
       Last edited on:18:24:17 Dec 26, 2017
         Tags: Warner, Smith, Boxing Day Test

MELBOURNE: Opener David Warner smashed a blistering century while skipper Steve Smith pulled his 22nd Test fifty to put Australia in a commanding position on the opening day of the fourth Ashes Test match here at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) on Tuesday.

At stumps, Australia had put themselves in a strong position as they were standing at 244-3, with Smith and Marsh batting at 65 and 31, respectively.

Looking to complete a 5-0 whitewash against England in Ashes, Australia had won the toss for the very first time, since their tour of India in March this year and decided to bat first.

The openers - Warner and Cameron Bancroft - gave the team a rapid start.

Warner smashed a scorching 103-run knock, including 13 boundaries and six, off 151 balls. With his innings, the opener also became the fifth fastest cricketer to cross 6,000 runs in Test cricket.

Bancroft, on the other hand, struggled initially with a barrage of short balls; however, he stayed put at the crease and supported Warner. He made a watchful 26 before being dismissed.

Chris Woakes, James Anderson and Stuart Broad all chipped in with a wicket each to bring England back into the game before Smith and Shaun Marsh joined forced to hand control of the match back to the Australians.

The home side had already regained the Ashes urn after they thrashed the visitors by an innings and 41 runs in Perth to take an unassailable 3-0 lead in the five-match series.

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